Yes, you read that headline correct. It is possible to earn a living (and a decent one at that) playing video games. It’s the American dream, right? 😛
The world of eSports is fairly new, and it’s something that I see taking off in popularity even more in the coming years. As more sponsorships and events come to light and receive mainstream media coverage it’s going to help push eSports to new heights.
Here is a little breakdown of why I think it’s starting to gain momentum and about to become one of the most lucrative opportunities, both from a player and sponsor perspective.
Social Media Helped
Social media gives its participants a platform to communicate with their fans and they are able to build strong connections with fans because they feel like they are being taken on the inside and being brought along on the journey.
The demo that eSports is going after is also the most active on social media, making it the perfect platform for players and brands to reach their audience.
Live Streaming via YouTube and Twitch
Some of the biggest names in eSports started on YouTube several years ago. They would upload videos of them doing nothing but playing popular video games and commentating. It took off, and people started subscribing to these channels at an alarming rate.
There are some video game playing YouTubers that are making millions of dollars a year just uploading content of them playing games. It’s wild, but validates that there is an audience for this.
Sponsors Came running with Open Wallets
Because there is such a large audience tuning in, sponsors are coming running with their wallets wide open. They want a piece of the action.
Red Bull just recently signed video gamer “Ninja” to an endorsement deal, showing just how popular eSports is becoming. Other major companies are starting to not only sponsor events and competition, but teams and individuals as well.
These players are becoming popular personalities and that combined with a large social media following is very attractive to large brands.
Low Barrier of Entry to Attempt to Compete
There is a low barrier to compete in eSports. You don’t have to be athletic. Height or strength doesn’t come into play. You just have to be good at video games. There is also a low cost to start so it’s really open to any demographic.
All a Minecraft player needs is a gaming console, the game itself, Minecraft hosting, and a lot of Red Bull. Then they are off to the races and can compete online and build their skills and following.
There is literally nothing standing in the way of someone that wants to pursue this career.
Viral Games Help with Traction
When a new game is released and takes off in popularity it helps. The most recent example is Fortnite. Epic Games, the company behind the game pulled in $3 billion the year before, thanks to this game taking off so strong.
This title received so much media and news coverage that the entire eSports industry benefited. There will always be a new “hot” title, and we can expect another Fortnite-like game in terms of buzz around the corner.
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